Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Fishing Report. 

At 5:45 am I flipped on my Mac at home as usual.  I could not believe what’s going on in Watertown, MA.  CNN reported that over 9,000 police officers were looking for Suspect #2 in the Boston Marathon terror attack.  Suspect #1 died last night.  I would like to have stayed home to watch the coverage.

It is very windy, raining and 65 degrees in Townsend this morning at 7:45 am.  When I pulled out of the driveway earlier, three deer ran in front of my truck and into the woods around our house.  I thought the last one was going to jump over my truck.  They were nervous and for a good reason.  This storm is awful.  I drove along Old Cades Cove road to Tuckaleechee Pike.  I stopped to turn right and looked for traffic coming from my left.  There was no traffic and there won’t be for a while. A huge tree had fallen across the road.

Little River is flowing at 287 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 255 cfs.  The water temperature is 60.9 degrees.

This is not a day to be in the woods.  Stay out of the Smokies until this storm passes.  It is dangerous out there.  I’m alone here in the shop and I’m hearing wind noises like I’ve never heard before.  It appears this large band of storms will be out of here in a few hours.

We are getting rain right now and more is on the way.  I am hoping, as you may be, that this storm will not have an adverse effect on water levels in the Smoky Mountains.  After today, the sun will be shining for several days.  It is going to be cooler with highs in the 60’s and lows in the high 30’s to the low 40’s through the weekend.  Sweet!

A group of customers came in the store at closing time last night.  We all stayed about an hour later than normal and took care of them.  They were nice guys, from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Texas.  I’m thinking about them right now because they are camping at the KOA in this storm.  One of them said the last time they were here, a huge storm blew through and the river rose several feet.  I don’t think that will happen this time. 

Fly Fishing in the Smokies should be good this weekend if the streams are not blown out.  The trout will be hitting either dry flies, wet flies, nymphs or streamers.  I have no idea right now as you can probably tell.  Be prepared with all of the above. 

Tomorrow, the Little River Chapter of Trout Unlimited is holding our annual river cleanup.  Volunteers will be picking up trash along the road and in the river.  We all want to invite you to be here, even if you are not a member of the Chapter.  This is an excellent opportunity to meet some great people and help Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Meet at Metcalf Bottoms Picnic Area at 9:00 am tomorrow (Saturday April 20).

This is not one of those “work you backside off” projects.  This is fun.  The Park Fisheries Biologists will be there as usual so you can meet them.  You will meet other trout fishing enthusiasts.  It’s about a 3 hour work project.  Around noon, the Chapter members will start cooking.  Yep, you will get a free lunch. 

Just show up, bring waders if you have them, bring family, bring friends, just don’t bring beer.  That’s not allowed.  You will have a great time, I promise you.  As the first President of the Little River Chapter, I helped organize the first cleanup 20 years ago.  This event has been happening every year since.

I will keep you updated on stream conditions as they occur.  Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.

UPDATE 12:45 PM - Little River has risen from 2.23 feet on the gauge to 2.47 feet which is not much. The water is a little cloudy in town, mainly from runoff outside the Park. Our rain gauge indicates we have received 3/4" since 7:30 am. The river is rising but I don't know how high it will go. Looking at the radar, it looks like the rain is over unless new storms form.

Byron Begley
April 19, 2013

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